One of my favorite quotes from my high school math teacher was “All people smile in the same language.” This proverb proved to be the catalyst to get me out in the world, along with my adventuresome husband. I had to test this theory when I went overseas to teach and found it’s completely true. A smile has to be one of the most powerfully positive visuals in society.
In session 3 we explored the importance and impact visual literacy has on our everyday lives. As the Visual Literacy White Paper states, “Visuals have the capacity to communicate instantly and universally among a broad range of ages and cultures”. I see images as the most effective forms of communication with most children. However, speech therapists and teachers working with students diagnosed with Asperger’s, autism or communication disorders have shown they can communicate and learn to speak with the help of visuals. There are success stories of certain Apps on Ipad and androids which have empowered these children to communicate all because of visual literacy. Showing images of facial expressions can help students learn how “to read” other peoples emotions. Pictures of daily routines are visual tools used to teach students what to do next in their daily schedule. This comes naturally to most of us but for 1 in 500 of our population, they rely on visuals to teach them appropriate gestures and facial expressions.
Society as a whole is becoming screen literate as posted in the New York Times. Young generations in developed countries don’t know a world without screens. However, eye tracking studies and C.R.A.P design, and presentation design clearly show that adults as well as children learn best with simple, concise images like infographs. Session 3 has taught me that visuals cross cultures and generations. Images help bridge the communication divide globally.